Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Senate And House GOP United In Support Of CIB Tax And Spend Bailout Plan

As a Republican, I'm totally ashamed of the Republicans in the Indiana General Assembly. They are united in a state budget deal that will impose $20 million in new taxes and state tax diversions for the corrupt and inefficient Capital Improvement Board. House Republicans plan to concur in the Senate budget, forcing Indianapolis' City-County Council to contemplate a series of tax increases to bail out the CIB, which has been running deficits for more than a decade, so it can give a $15 million a year subsidy to the billionaire Simons who own the Indiana Pacers. Ironically, Republicans criticized a one-year budget plan passed by the House Democrats would lead to tax increases. The Senate Republican-backed plan guarantees tax increases for Marion County residents and a loss of $8 million in funding for other state programs. It rewards the CIB with additional money without accountability for its past, gross mishandling of public expenditures. Well, I guess we'll have to look to House Speaker Pat Bauer, a Democrat, to stop this tax and spend boondoggle. Thanks for nothing, Rep. Brian Bosma. You helped kill the elimination of township government so your law firm could continue billing hundreds of thousands of dollars to township governments in Marion County. And now the anti-tax crusader wants to nickel and dime ordinary taxpayers to reward the state's wealthiest citizens. Just when I think Bosma has reached the height of hypocrisy, he finds another way to outdo himself. What's the point of the Republican Party, anyway, if it cannot stand up to the CIB and the billionaires feeding at its trough?

UPDATE: The Indiana Law Blog has an interesting post on the state budget bill as passed by the Senate. You can view a PDF of the document here. Get this, it allows the City of Westfield to implement its own admissions tax to finance that stupid sports/entertainment complex their Jim Brainard wannabe mayor has proposed. The new CIB appointments to be made by the legislative leaders should prove fruitful to the billionaire sports team owners since the legislative leaders have all been bought off by them with big campaign contributions and free tickets to games. Also, note that the State Treasurer is going to dump $9 million in loans to the corrupt agency, meaning it will get at least a $29 million infusion of tax dollars. The synopsis for the CIB portions reads as follows:

Allows the state treasurer to invest in obligations of the Marion county capital improvement board (CIB). Provides that the investment may not exceed $9 million per year for 2009 through 2011. Provides terms for the capital improvement board obligations issued to the state treasurer. Permits the Marion County city-county council to increase, before September 1, 2009, the innkeeper's tax by not more than 1% (9% to 10%). Permits during January through March 2013 the supplemental auto rental excise tax to be increased by not more than 2% (4% to 6%) and the admissions tax to be increased by not more than 4% (6% to 10%). Deposits the revenue from the county tax increases in a new sports and convention facilities operating fund for the CIB. Restricts the use of the new operating fund to paying usual and customary operating expenses with respect to capital improvements operated by the CIB. Allows for an addition to the Marion County professional sports development area to include the hotels in an area bounded by Washington, Illinois, and Maryland streets. Provides for state sales taxes and state and local income taxes from the additional area to be captured for the CIB up to $8,000,000 per year. Allows the captured taxes to be deposited in the new sports and convention facilities operating fund for the CIB if: (1) the budget director determines that the innkeepers' tax is imposed at the maximum rate and in effect on January 1 of a year (September 1 for 2009); or (2) the Marion County city-county council raises at least $4 million from the innkeeper's tax and the capital improvement board issues obligations to the state treasurer. Reduces the number of appointments to the CIB by the county commissioners from two members to one members. Provides that the president pro tempore of the senate, the speaker of the house of representatives, and the governor shall each make one appointment to the CIB. Provides that the terms of the members of the capital improvement board expire January 15, 2010, and new members must be appointed to serve terms beginning January 15, 2010. Requires the CIB to submit its operating and capital budget for review, approval, or rejection to the Marion County city-county council. Requires the CIB to present a long range financial plan to the city-county council before January 1, 2010. Requires the state board of accounts (SBOA) to do a financial and compliance audit annually of the CIB. Requires the CIB to submit the SBOA reports to the Marion County city-county council. Requires the Marion County city-county council to review the SBOA reports at a public hearing. Requires the city-county council to approve the issuance of revenue and general obligation bonds by the CIB. Removes the Marion County board of commissioners from the review and approval of general obligation bonds and adds a requirement for the mayor's approval.



Dana said...

Bosma... He was against gay rights until that became politically unpalatable. Now he's the budget hawk.

What a crock.

Is there not one Republican out there in office with one shred of common sense?

Melyssa said...

Dana...there are a couple good R's out there.

Senator Mike Delph is one of them!

Dana said...

Sorry, Mely's, I know there are (like Lugar), but they seem to be drowned out the last ten years or so by total losers and dog-whistle reactionary moronic Shrub-loving, Cheney-imitating, bathroom-sex addicted warmongering racing wannabe talk-show host faux-Christian Big-Brother John Bircher laetrile-sucking scumbags...


Jon said...

So it would appear that we are empowering the inept behavior of the CIB by increasing their revenue stream at the state level and not allowing the city council to vote up or down on new taxes. The only positives are SBA audits and new members 1/2010.

If enacted as written how does this help?